Thursday, August 18, 2011

Working on the side: Pt.2

Yesterday, I wrote about how I use my side businesses, and how I had some rough beginnings.

Actually, we'll say I was rough for a long time, working hard to promote my business, but getting basically nowhere. I couldn't beg people to let me do work for them.

Then I realized:

Begging is not professional.

In order to have people recognize me as professional, I would have to show it in every iota of my appearance and candor. This must be the secret of the 'pros'.

By walking and talking like a duck, I would, in-fact become a duck.

So, I went out and bought some very nice new clothes. Fine-spun golf shirts, not that different then the ones I had worn when I worked at Staples. Well-tailored dress pants, and new shoes. Even a big bag of fine-threaded dress socks. I scraped off the white golf-logos from the sleeves with a exacto-knife, and stood in the mirror, admiring the 'professionally cut' figure that peered back at me.

I was absolutely ready to make money.

I felt a run of 'professionalism' in my blood, and called up some of my previous customers that day, to offer them a new 'service special'. I smiled while I spoke, and said more 'pleases' and 'thank yous' then I care to remember. I called over half my back library of 'clients', most of whom were family friends, or referrals from them.

By the time I was through, I was beat, like a I had run a marathon. Not a single new lead. Not a single person wanted me to work on their unit, even for free. I had been brushed off, in the most polite ways, of course, that they had 'already taken it elsewhere' or 'didn't need any more work done'.

Now, it is very reasonable to think that they really did simply not need anything done.  But we are talking about people that haven't had me (or anyone else to my knowledge) work on the unit for a year or two. I offered a 'annual tuneup/clean up' and they were strongly not interested.

What did I do wrong?

There were a few reasons that I didn't get the resounding response I wanted, and to give you a hint:
It had nothing to do with my shoes.

Have you ever been brushed off by a client?
What did you do to solve it?
Let me know! :)

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